South African politicians who have amped up their political arsenal through education over the years

Former health Minister Zweli Mkize has graduated with a Master of administration degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Supplied

Former health Minister Zweli Mkize has graduated with a Master of administration degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Supplied

Published May 12, 2024


Education is not a requirement for South African politicians to climb the ladder or get into Parliament and because of this, it seems like not a lot of politicians make it a priority.

However, some biggest political players have not been resting on their laurel and attained academic success outside of politics.

Below is a list of at least four politicians from each party and their qualifications.

African National Congress (ANC)

President Cyril Ramaphosa holds a law degree from the University of South Africa (Unisa) obtained in 1981

Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Naledi Pandor holds a Master’s degree in Education from the University of London and has another Master’s degree in General Linguistics obtained from the University of Stellenbosch.

She also holds several certificates in education, administration, and leadership.

Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi holds a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery from the University of Natal now known as University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Minister of Mineral and Energy Resources, Gwede Mantashe holds a Master’s Degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, a Bachelor of Commerce from Unisa, where he also completed a Bcom Honours. He is currently studying towards a Master’s Degree in Business Administration through MANCOSA.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF)

EFF president Julius Malema holds a two-year diploma in youth development through Unisa. He also obtained a degree in Communications and African languages at Unisa and has a Honours degree in Philosophy.

EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu has Master’s degree in Political Sciences at the University of Witwatersrand (Wits).

He recently graduated with another Master’s degree in International Development from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies.

EFF member of Parliament Dr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi obtained his PhD in Political Science from Wits in 2017.

EFF secretary-general Marshall Mzingisi Dlamini holds a degree in International Relations from Unisa and he is currently registered for a honours in Political Sciences at the institution.

Democratic Alliance (DA)

DA leader John Steenhuisen only has a Matric certificate he obtained at Northwood Boys High School in Durban at least 30-years ago.

Chief whip of the DA, Siviwe Gwarube has a degree in Law, Politics, and Philosophy from Rhodes University.

She has an honours degree Political Science and Government from the University of the Western Cape.

Chairperson of the DA, Dr Ivan Meyer holds a PhD in Public Administration from the University of Stellenbosch. He also has a number of international certificates and diplomas.

Council Chairperson of the DA, Helen Zille has a degree in journalism from Wits.

Action SA

Action SA leader Herman Mashaba hold a degree in accounting which he obtained from Unisa.

Action SA National chairperson, Michael Beaumont holds a honours in Politics and Environmental Science from Rhodes University and has completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration from Wits Business School.

Action SA Chief Strategist, André Coetzee has a Master’s in Public Policy University obtained at University of Oxford.

Master’s in International Relations obtained at Stellenbosch University.

Action SA Media relations officer, Sam Mgobozi holds a degree in political studies and English literature from University of Cape Town.

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